How COVID-19 has continued to impact Digital Media Consumption in APAC – March 2020

May 19, 2020
Industry News

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This article is part of a series of insights that reveal the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on online consumer behaviour.

The exponential spread of COVID-19 has continued to generate unrivalled disruption and triggered changes in consumers’ behaviour. In this follow-up to our previous blog post, the APAC Client Insights team analysed the most recent data (March 2020) and here are some updates on the shifting digital consumption trends in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia and Australia.1. Hong Kong

1.1. Increasing screen time
The coronavirus began to wreak havoc around the world in March 2020. In Hong Kong, with a rising daily tally of confirmed cases, stringent border control and social distancing measures were enforced to contain the community outbreak.

Hong Kongers were staying home and turning to their computers, smartphones, and tablets to occupy their time. Total digital consumption continued to grow, with an 8% increase in visits and a 10% increase in total minutes spent online in March 2020.

1.2. Keeping abreast of the times
With COVID-19 sweeping across the globe, News/Information is still an area of focus, and visitation and engagement in terms of views and minutes spent are at record high levels.

The pandemic has rattled financial markets, the reach of, and engagement with, Business/Finance News have surged in March 2020. Visits were up 19% and total minutes increased by 40% compared to February 2020.


1.3. Steering through the financial storm with information
With the unsettling financial markets, Financial Services attracted attention from consumers, with an 8% increase in unique visitors and double-digit growth in both visits and total minutes spent.

Riding out the volatility storm, investors were increasingly seeking financial advice and checking values of investment or making trades, this is evident in the jump in unique visitors and time spent in Financial Services & Advice and Investments sub-categories.


1.4. Hermitting at home
Bracing for social distancing, more have turned to reading. Visits to Books had a steady upward climb, with 24% growth in visits in March 2020 compared to February 2020.

Visits to the Computer Software category were up 27% compared to February 2020, probably to support the new stay-at-home activities – working, learning and entertaining.

Escaping the doom and gloom, countryside and hiking trails are bustling with people during weekends. There were incremental visits to Sports/Outdoor, looking for new outdoor or sports equipment.

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